Val de Combrès
La Lumiere 2022

  • Region Luberon, Southern Rhône, France
  • Grapes Carigan & Grenache
  • Vineyard Organic & Biodynamic
  • Cellar Fermented with native yeasts, unfiltered & unfined, no additional sulphites
  • ABV 14%
  • Size 750ml

Quantity

About the Wine

One of Val's deliciously light and juicy reds, in a style he refers to as 'glouglou plus' - there is a wealth of explosive, pure fruit character, but not to the loss of structure in the wine. 

2022 was a difficult vintage, ravaged by drought. After losing much of his yield for this wine he has opted to make it the same way but by buying in the fruit from a neighboring biodynamic grower. The Carignan is given the carbo treatment in concrete vats in whole bunches and the Grenache is de-stemmed and has a sort maceration in steel. The two wines are then blended together and bottled in spring 2023 with nothing added. We have cellared the wine since then, so with over a year in the bottle is is bang on point.

Sumptuous black cherry fruit and spice jostle together with grippy, dialled-back tannins. A playful, well-rounded bouncing ball of a wine with bags of charm. Reflecting the vintage it shows some real heat this time, but Val has kept the balance perfectly and it is as easy-drinking as ever. Best served lightly chilled.

About Val de Combrès

Valentin Létoquart’s story is one that we’re hearing more and more in our exploration of small producers with principled approaches. Up until 2013, Val de Combrès first vintage, he had been growing grapes and supplying to a large Rhône co-operative. Whilst this can provide a producer with a reliable source of income, for Valentin it became too much to see his thoughtful, at this point organic vineyard work essentially going to waste when the harvested grapes were thrown in with those of other growers working on a more industrial level, with chemical herbicides and pesticides, poor soil health and barren, monocultural vineyards. Such was his inspiration to take the plunge and go it alone - we’re so glad he did.

Valentin now tends just under 8 hectares around the villages of Oppède and Ménerbes at the southeasterly stretch of the Rhône valley, in Luberon. For the most part, his wines stand apart from the traditional style of the AOC here, helped in part by the elevation of the vines. They sit in harder to work plots that rise towards the hills that flank the south of the region and serve as a border with Provence. They are remote and secluded, mainly surrounded by forest and away from the low-lying plains - perfect for Val to carry out his meticulous biodynamic vineyard work, utilising plant-based treatments and plowing by horse. 

Fittingly, in the cellar there is an appropriate lightness of touch; fermentations are carried out in concrete and steel vessels using the native yeasts, sometimes in whole bunches with carbonic maceration, or by de-stemming and gently macerating the grapes. Both are methods that avoid a heavy extraction. They are generally bottled the spring following harvest and with no additions whatsoever. The resulting wines are bright, exuberant and often explosively fruit-driven, particularly in the case of his vibrant, juicy reds. Despite his exacting standards in the vineyard, when it comes to the wine itself, Val transmits a sense of fun and playfulness - each radiates charm and an infectious energy that really draws you in. Val de Combrès are wines for good times.

Find out more about Val de Combrès

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Val de Combrès
L'Ivresse 2022

Deep, lip-smacking blackcurrant and peppery spice rules from the thicker-skinned grapes, with the Cab Franc contributing some plush sheen and herbal fragrance. Showing a bit more structure than previous vintages, this hits somewhere between the breeziness of Les Vacances and the heft of Les Quilles de Joie. Find out more.

  • Region Luberon, Southern Rhône, France
  • Grapes Cabernet Franc, Syrah & Grenache
  • Vineyard Organic & Biodynamic
  • Cellar Fermented with native yeasts, unfiltered & unfined, no additional sulphites
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Les Quilles de Joie 2020

Val's nod to the classical style of Luberon and the only of his wines to see time ageing in barrel, for a more structured, rustic expression. Despite this more old-school treatment, the trademark vibrancy is barely concealed beneath the surface, a burst of spicy cherry and raspberry is reined in with developed notes of tobacco and sweet leather. Find out more.

  • Region Luberon, Southern Rhône, France
  • Grapes Syrah & Grenache
  • Vineyard Biodynamic
  • Cellar Fermented with native yeasts, unfiltered & unfined, no additional sulphites
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Les Vacances 2022

Val's lightest, juiciest red - lightness and purity of fruit is the goal here. Bountiful cherry and raspberry fruits with a confected quality and anise-like spices. A fluid wine with pronounced luminosity and just so much fun to drink - 'the grenadine of the estate' as Val likes to call it. Find out more.

  • Region Luberon, Southern Rhône, France
  • Grapes Grenache
  • Vineyard Biodynamic
  • Cellar Fermented with native yeasts, unfiltered & unfined, no additional sulphites
£22

Quantity